2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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The 2022 Winter Olympics kicked off on Friday night with a technical opening ceremony at the Beijing International Stadium, where organizers and officials want to focus on China’s performance. it can host the world’s biggest sporting event instead of controversy and uncertainty. His choice was long overdue.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

Diniger Yilamujiang, a member of the Uygur tribe from the Xinjiang region, lit the snow pan in the middle of the square after the ceremony, which took place in July 2020 in just over two hours. Xinhua News Agency, and Zhao Jiawen, who will each compete in the first Olympics.

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The choice to host the ceremony and community parade at the Bird’s Nest Stadium, which will be held on February 20, is a major milestone in Beijing’s status as the first city to host summer and winter sports. . The 80,000-seat venue was built to host the 2008 Summer Olympics, which China sought to use as a symbol of its emergence as a global superpower.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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The Olympic bells are rung during the opening ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympics at the Beijing Capital Stadium on February 4. Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Aja Romano is a cultural reporter, focusing on criticism and cultural considerations. Before joining in 2016, he was a staff reporter at the Daily Dot.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

The Beijing Winter Olympics have started a strange season that is expected to see the unprecedented challenges presented by the Covid-19 disease. Prominent Chinese film director Zhang Yimou (who also directed the 2008 Beijing opening ceremony), this year’s opening ceremony focused on visual spectacle, with giant LED screens on display. Covered floor and stage, and no celebrity entertainers.

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In the face of a diplomatic boycott by many countries, including the United States, over human rights violations – meaning that the United States did not send an official representative to the tournament but its athletes competed as usual – China took the initiative. which is not appropriate regarding the opening ceremony of this year’s tournament. . But inevitably, violent geopolitics infiltrated the event.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

The activities that coincided with the Spring Festival of the Chinese New Year, included about 3,000 players, most of whom were young, and emphasized peace, unity and the world community in fighting the epidemic. The combination was as calm as you can get: snow.

In the continuation of the festival, China encouraged athletes to sign the “trap wall” with other countries. The country’s government has launched a major winter sports program ahead of the games, where it says it has succeeded in involving more than 300 million Chinese in winter sports, especially for children and youth. The ceremony emphasized these citizens more than anyone else, with no famous singers or actors taking part – a first for the Olympics in recent times.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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This may be due to the difficulty of coordinating celebrity sports while Beijing is still in a difficult state of lockdown due to the outbreak. This coincides with China’s year-long “qinglang” campaign to restore the image of celebrities and their fans – a major effort to curb the undue influence and popularity of idols.

It’s consistent with China’s message since the outbreak began: We’re all in this together, we’re winning together, thanks to the bravery of “everyday heroes” like volunteers and essential workers – who have implemented and China’s draconian (yet very successful) measures. ) The purpose of Covid. As 2021 marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China, this article highlights the importance of young people in leading society (and the Chinese Communist Party) in the future.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

The theme of this issue played a big part in the opening ceremony, from the sea of ​​cute children smiling and singing on stage to the video of the big kids jumping through the Olympic Games. To light the cauldron, Chinese players born in recent years passed the torch to each other, along with two players born in the 2000s (one of which contains a message to the world, but more than that in one second).

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At the Parade of Nations, excited volunteers jumped, danced and waved along with Olympic athletes to the music of European classical music. The beauty of bucolic snow dominates the presentation, clearly highlighting all kinds of snow, but the harmony of the common snow scene awaits spring. It’s easy to think of it all as a general metaphor for the global Olympic audience as we await the end of the Covid pandemic. At one point, roller skaters set up a crazy snow pattern to the tune of John Lennon’s “Imagination.”

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

Despite its overall effectiveness, the situation is still politically tense. NBC viewers watching the ceremony were treated to an isolated Vladimir Putin in Russia’s box, attending the event despite a border conflict with Ukraine that threatens to derail the Games and focus on world unity.

At the same time as Chinese President Xi Jinping looked on, the torch of the Olympic Games was handed over to a 21-year-old athlete, Diniger Yilamujiang, who is a member of the Uyghur minority in China. Human rights experts have accused the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) of imprisoning millions of Uighurs in forced labor camps in Xinjiang. The US State Department described it as a genocide and accused China of committing crimes against humanity such as rape, sterilization and torture.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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China claims that, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that they do not exist in the camps, the labor is voluntary, and that allegations to the contrary are “the lie of the century”. So the decision to single out Yilamujiang to end the opening ceremony is deeply political – and will undermine the message of unity presented at the opening of the Olympics. (Yilamujiang is not the first Uighur athlete to carry the torch to China; Kamalturk Yalkun, who carried the torch at age 17 at the 2008 Olympics, now lives in the United States, and has been protesting for years and the persecution of the Uighurs by China.)

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China also welcomed various representatives from Taiwan (competing as the Chinese “Taipei” team) and Hong Kong, despite efforts to include the territories more fully in its airspace and emphasize the concept of “One China”. As Yale professor Jing Tsu explained during NBC’s coverage, these contradictions are part of China’s political strategy: the country does not hope to sway the world with its message — but still, it is clear: unity, the future. and peace in the world. “We’ll see if there are takers,” said Tsu.

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

It should also be noted that China and its people are not law-abiding, and they are not in line with the CCP’s human rights abuses – whatever the CCP wants you to think. . As the Chinese team hosted their hometown crowd for the night, the Beijing Olympic Committee insisted on giving a warm welcome to all participating nations, starting with the Mexican athletes in uniform. and Day of the Dead shirts until the American Samoa representative was the only one who arrived without a shirt. , fully vaselined, and ready to play.

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Perhaps the opening ceremony reminded us of one thing: no extraordinary miracle or regional violence can crush the wonderful and unexpected joy of the Olympic Games, from the strange and the strange. surprise to the point of heroism. Let the games begin!

2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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2023 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony

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